George Meredith

(12 February 1828 – 18 May 1909 / Portsmouth, England)

Modern Love Xxviii: I Must Be Flattered - Poem by George Meredith

I must be flattered. The imperious
Desire speaks out. Lady, I am content
To play with you the game of Sentiment,
And with you enter on paths perilous;
But if across your beauty I throw light,
To make it threefold, it must be all mine.
First secret; then avowed. For I must shine
Envied,--I, lessened in my proper sight!
Be watchful of your beauty, Lady dear!
How much hangs on that lamp you cannot tell.
Most earnestly I pray you, tend it well:
And men shall see me as a burning sphere;
And men shall mark you eyeing me, and groan
To be the God of such a grand sunflower!
I feel the promptings of Satanic power,
While you do homage unto me alone.


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Read poems about / on: beauty, power, alone, light, god



Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003



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